New course in public policy and global affairs

The Hindu Mon Dec 21 2015

A new two-year master’s program in public policy and global affairs at UBC is highlighted in a new article in The Hindu.

These dogs have a good sense of humour

Tech Times Fri Dec 18 2015 By: Alyssa Navarro

UBC psychology professor and canine expert Stanley Coren believes some dogs actually have a good sense of humour, while some do not. In a Tech Times article, Coren also recommended that people hoping to adopt a dog should look for one that matches their temperament.

China cracks down on politically incorrect maps

The Atlantic-CityLab Thu Dec 17 2015 By: Linda Poon

A new article in CityLab reported on China’s stricter rules regarding maps, both print and online.

The article included a quote from Tim Brook, a professor of Chinese history at UBC.

“Regimes that are anxious about their legitimacy fetishize the signs of legitimacy,” Brook said.”So one of the signs of legitimacy is a map–there you are one color, your borders are all drawn properly and you look like a proper state.”

Lower blood pressure linked to spending money on others

Huffington Post Wed Dec 16 2015 By: Brian Vinh Tien Trinh

Huffington Post highlighted a recent study linking charitable spending to lower blood pressure.

“What we’ve found is some of the strongest evidence to date that spending money on others can lead to significant improvements in physical health,” said study author Ashley Whillans.

Knowledge work has had its day

Bloomberg Thu Dec 17 2015 By: Justin Fox

A Bloomberg article explored the passing of the era of the knowledge worker and the dawn of the “relationship worker” in light of the growing computerization of the economy.

The article cited a paper published in 2013 by UBC economists Paul Beaudry and David A. Green and Benjamin M. Sand of York University.  Beaudry, Green and Sand had noted the decline of jobs focused on cognitive tasks after two decades of growth.

Mixed-faith families need nurturing

Indo Canadian Voice Tue Dec 15 2015 By: Rattan Mall

A new article in Indo Canadian Voice featured UBC psychology professor Ara Norenzayan’s observations on interreligious marriages. Such marriages face a number of challenges and need to be nurtured, Norenzayan said. Many people still frown upon mixed-faith couples when one of the partners comes from a religion other than Christianity. A second issue is the conflicts that come up when raising children in mixed-faith families.

Conservative politics, business and COP21

Vancouver Observer Wed Dec 16 2015 By: David Tindall

Business leaders at the Paris climate talks announced their commitment to dealing with climate change and appear to be ahead of politicians in this respect, noted UBC sociology professor David Tindall in a Vancouver Observer op-ed.

“Many corporations now see runaway climate change as very bad for business, entailing unpredictable costs,” wrote Tindall. “Not only that, some see the transition to a green, decarbonized economy as a business opportunity — or even, in some cases, as a part of their social responsibility.”

The Paris agreement and Canada’s involvement

Times Colonist Wed Dec 16 2015 By: David Tindall

UBC sociology professor David Tindall offered qualified praise for the Paris climate talks in an op-ed for the Victoria Times Colonist. Canada has succeeded in improving its image as a supporter of climate-change plans but now needs to buckle down and make those plans a reality, Tindall wrote.

“We have now found our geographical bearings. We know roughly, but not exactly, how to get to the meeting. But we are still late, and will have to figure out a way to increase our speed to our destination,” said Tindall.

5 questions for Dr. Wade Davis

Huffington Post Wed Dec 16 2015 By: Tim Ward

UBC anthropology professor Wade Davis highlighted the importance of listening to indigenous community concerns in drawing up climate change policies.

“The voices of indigenous people matter because they can still remind us that there are indeed alternatives, other ways of orienting human beings in social, spiritual, and ecological space,” said Davis in a Q&A with the Huffington Post. “This is not to suggest naively that we abandon everything and attempt to mimic the ways of non-industrial societies, or that any culture be asked to forfeit its right to benefit from the genius of technology.”

10 best university libraries in Canada

Huffington Post Wed Dec 16 2015

UBC’s libraries and study spaces are among the best in Canada, according to a Huffington Post list. The article mentioned the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre, the Chapman Learning Commons, and the Law Library in particular.

Acclaimed UBC student inventor goes for quiet Christmas

Montreal Gazette Sun Dec 13 2015 By: Glen Schaefer

Ann Makosinski, a student inventor who attends UBC, was profiled in articles in the Montreal GazetteCalgary HeraldEdmonton JournalRegina Leader PostThe Province, and Times Colonist.

Makosinski is in the Arts One survey course and a first-year chemistry course at UBC.

Experts split on top priority for changes to shipbuilding costing

iPolitics Tue Dec 15 2015 By: Amanda Connolly

A new iPolitics article highlighted the government’s plan to change the way it estimates cost for Canada’s national shipbuilding procurement strategy. UBC professor Michael Byers, a Canadian defence policy specialist, criticised current cost estimates.

“My advice to the government would be to put the brakes on the whole thing and prepare for a tendered competition,” Byers said.

Spending money on others may improve your health

Global News Mon Dec 14 2015 By: Tania Kohut

Research by UBC PhD student Ashley Whillans suggests that sharing the wealth boosts your mood and even lowers your blood pressure. In a Global News article, Whillans described her experiment with 128 people diagnosed with high blood pressure. The participants’ blood pressure levels were lower when they spent money on others.

Similar stories appeared in Huffington PostMetro News and Vancity Buzz.

5 ways Canadians can help reduce climate change

CBC News Tue Dec 15 2015 By: Alexandra Sagan

A few experts suggest ways of actually changing climate change policies in Canada. In a CBC article, UBC climatology professor Simon Donner urges people to write to their local MPs or city council members, saying “The more that your representatives hear about this, the more likely it is that … policies will be put in place.”

He also recommended eating less meat and shopping locally.

Digitization of South Peace archives keeps history alive

Alaska Highway News Mon Dec 14 2015 By: Mike Carter

South Peace residents have volunteered to digitize records of the region to keep their history alive, according to Alaska Highway News.

An $8,000-plus grant from the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre at UBC assisted their efforts to set up this digital archive.